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The best apps for learning sign language

The integration of smart phones into our daily lives has proven very beneficial for those wanting to learn American Sign Language (ASL) for career goals or simply to communicate with deaf and hard-of-hearing friends and family members.  Learning at home or on-the-go and at your own pace has never been so easy.  We found several helpful sign language apps that can be downloaded from the Internet or on from the iTunes store for iPhone. 

iASL app


This application developed for the iPhone and iPad is a revolutionary resource available on iTunes (http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/iasl-translate-english-to/id364176106?mt=8) that easily converts English to American Sign Language (ASL).  iASL features a 5,800-world video dictionary and has the ability to combine worlds to make sentences, which makes the possibilities for communication practically endless.  iASL is one of the most comprehensive ASL databases ever assembled, and includes a grammatically correct ASL translator, a phrase bank, and more.  Beginner and intermediate ASL learners find that the application is easy to work with and affordable.  iASL translates sentences of up to five words, finger spells words that are not contained in its dictionary, and allows users to save favorite words and phrases for quick recall later.


ASL Pro AppASL Pro

The ASL Pro Application from Zoosware makes learning American Sign Language easy and fun.  Developed for the iPhone, iPad, and Androidm this app allows users to learn a new vocabulary at their own pace.  American Sign Language has three versions to choose from.  ASL Lite is free and has a dictionary of 50 worlds.  ASL Pro contains 700 words and ASL Ultimate offers a database of 1400 words.  ASL Pro offers a search function that lets users quickly look up a specific word and contains a Quiz feature that tests users’ knowledge of material learned.  It also records a history of results for quizzes.  This app makes studying American Sign Language convenient for students, deaf and hearing-impaired individuals, and parents of hearing-impaired children. More information about this app can be found here: http://www.appbrain.com/app/asl-lite/com.zoosware.asllite



ASL DictionaryASL Dictionary

ASL Dictionary, available for download in the Android Market, provides a reference of over 4,800 signed words.  The signed words are shown in easy-to-follow, clear videos that can be searched.  One reviewer of this app was a school bus driver for deaf children, who reported the app as an “excellent tool” for herself as well as her attendant.  The app received a 4-star rating and costs $2.99 to download.  To learn more about this app, visit here: https://market.android.com/details?id=com.signtel&hl=en


Sign 4 Me app


Sign 4 Me

Sign 4 Me, a sophisticated smart phone application for learning sign language, is a Signed English translator and the only application for smart phones that utilizes sign language instruction in 3D.  Characters are zoomed out and in to give the best view of every sign.  Sign 4 Me is highly interactive, as users control the characters and their placement completely.  The sign library contains more than 11,500 words that can be typed in sentences, phrases, individually, or in alphabet form.  Sign 4 Me saves everything in its history, allowing for easy recall by date or alphabetical look up later.  Users control the speed of signing with convenient controls and turn on or off a looping feature.  Sign 4 Me is available for the iPhone via iTunes here: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/sign-4-me-a-signed-english/id312882992?mt=8

Learning Sign Language isn't the only service available for your mobile phone. Check out "The Best Phone Apps to Measure Noise Levels," "The Best Phone Apps to Check Your Hearing" and "The Best Apps for Captioning" to find more.

Sign language isn't something utilized only by deaf individuals either. If you or your loved one is experiencing hearing loss, find a professional to evaluate your ability!

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